Lagos, Nigeria (PANA) - Burkina Faso's Minister for Education and Literacy Koumba Boly has urged ECOWAS member states to promote the peace culture in the region through value-centered education.
The minister made the call at the start of a regional technical workshop for the validation of the ECOWAS Reference Manual on the Culture of Peace, Human Rights, Citizenship, and Regional Integration started off in the nation's capital, Ouagadougou.
She said development is dependent on peace and security, adding that “education remains the main means for the realisation of the ECOWAS regional integration agenda.”
Ms. Boly therefore urged participants attending the five-day workshop to enrich the Reference Manual, which is a product of wide consultative process initiated in 2006 across the West African region, taking into account the experiences of experts in peace-building in the region and outside, including from UNESCO.
An ECOWAS Commission statement made available to PANA here Tuesday quoted the minister as suggesting that a validated Manual should be translated into local languages for teaching in educational institutions in member states and for ease of dissemination to community citizens.
The ECOWAS Commissioner for Human Development and Gender, Dr. Adrienne Diop, represented by the Director of Education, Prof Abdoulaye Maga, linked the recurrent crises and instability in the region to the retrogression of the high value system that characterized traditional societies in the region.
The Commissioner expressed the hope that the Manual would lead to harmonised training on the universal values in various aspects of education to forge a common understanding that respects the diversities and differences of member states.
“This will facilitate the transition from the culture of war to a culture of peace, respect for human life, human rights and dignity, and rejection of violence, as well as equality of men and women,” she said, adding that the aim is to entrench universal justice, liberty and equality, good governance, democracy and integration, on a foundation of peace to promote education for development.
The technical meeting, co-sponsored by the ECOWAS Commission and the African Development Bank, through the ECOWAS Peace Fund, is aimed at improving and validating the Manual for submission to a Ministerial meeting in September 2012.
-0- PANA SEG 3July2012